We happen to think that sparkling wine isn't just for special occasions, but it is perfect for the holidays and New Year's Eve! If you need a special bubbly for a special someone or a sparkling wine to help you ring in the New Year, here are eight of our picks for every price point and budget.
Billecart-Salmon Tête de Cuvée -Cuvee Nicolas
This is a don’t-miss champagne of 2021. This exceptional cuvée was created in 1964 as a tribute to the House’s founder. It results from the blending of Grands Crus from the classified Côte des Blancs vineyards (Chardonnay) and the Montagne de Reims (Pinot Noir). A lovely color of sparkling yellow gold veiled in luminous golden reflections. There is a balanced tension controlled by the blossoming of the wine (seeded and stone fruit, citrus fruit, warm madeleines) and embodied by the line of noble resinous flavors (spruce and juniper berries from Houlle).
Eric Rodez - Cuvée des Crayères Grand Cru Champagne NV
Eric Rodez is the 8th generation in his family to produce Champagne, and he has been making Champagne under his own name since 1984. Beyond his technical skills, he is also a man wholeheartedly devoted to his region, working tirelessly to promote the image and quality of winemaking in Champagne. And if that isn't enough, he's also the Mayor of Ambonnay. This is a Champagne of body and spirit made with 60% Pinot Noir and 40% Chardonnay. Straight, round, generous, the Cuvee Crayères is made on average from a dozen different wines from 4 to 5 different vintages, with 20 to 25% of wines vinified in small oak barrels, with 45 to 50% reserve wines helping to bring homogeneity. This Champagne gold in hue with small golden highlights. The nose reveals floral and mineral notes allowing upon aeration the release of red and white fruits. The palate is fresh and generous, playing with notes of spring berries.
Hubert Paulet Rosé Brut
For those who prefer their bubbles to be pink. Champagne Hubert Paulet is a family owned domaine located in the village of Rilly-la-Montagne. Their 8 hectares of vineyards, which are planted to Pinot Noir, Chardonnay and Pinot Meunier, are classed as premier cru status, and sit on the north side of the mountain of Reims. The goal at Hubert Paulet is to showcase the particularities of Rilly’s chalky terroir by working the soil using only natural viticultural practices. The domaine presently sells off half of their grape production to Billecart-Salmon. With his best fruit Olivier Paulet produces just under 2000 cases of Champagne Hubert Paulet. Rich and lively, this wine displays delicate berry nuances matched by hints of orange citrus and dusty rose. The wine finishes with lovely brightness and persistence.
Paul Zinck Crémant d'Alsace - Magnum
Get more bubbly for your buck with this fun, big bottle from Alsace! This traditional method sparkling wine made from 60% Pinot Noir, 30% Chardonnay and 10% Pinot Blanc is a lovely alternative to the better known crémants of France, and even preferable to some bargain basement Champagnes. This is a crisp, fresh style but with plenty of depth and restrained richness from the addition of 20% reserve wine and 18 months spent on the lees. It has a fresh green apple character filled out with cream, spice and brioche notes towards the finish.
Recaredo “Terrers” Gran Reserva Brut Nature
For almost a century, Recaredo has maintained a firm commitment: to produce terroir wines that reflect the landscapes of the Alt Penedès (Barcelona) as honestly and transparently as possible. They make only vintage brut nature sparkling wines with a distinctive character marked by long ageing. This wine is made from Macabeu (58%) with Xarel-lo (39%) and Parellada (3%) from multiple vineyards in the Val del Bitlles. Aromas of lemon curd, peach, green apple, with hints of brioche, walnut, ginger on the nose. Rich and weighty with a creamy mousse, ripe fruit & yeast, fresh acidity, savoury, lovely saline mineral finish.
Bourdy Crémant du Jura
Rather unheralded by the masses, Jura is on the east side of France squeezed in between Burgundy and Switzerland (yes the cheese is amazing). Only about 10% of the wine produced in the region is exported and we are super lucky to have Jean Bourdy in Alberta. Bourdy, one of France's eldest winemaking families, has created an engaging, traditional method sparkler from 100% Chardonnay with apple, pear and fig notes with ginger and toast on the finish.
Suriol Cava Brut Nature
From 3 different certified organic plots of native grapes average age 25 years old; this cuvée is 40% Macabeo from La Plana, 30% Xarel-lo from L’Hort, and 30% Parellada from Les Carbasses. The wine is fermented with wild yeasts -by parcel- in a stainless steel vat with natural malolactic fermentation occurring in underground concrete tanks during the winter after the harvest. The wine is then racked and bottled, where it rests 26 months on the lees until hand disgorged. This is a lovely Cava with rich flavors, freshness, and an elegant balance between fine bubbles and notes of bread yeast, honey and citrus.
La Tordera Prosecco DOC
Quintessential Prosecco, from a multi-generational family winery. Fruity and fresh bouquet of green apple and pear, along with floral and vanilla overtones make for a balanced, fresh and lively sparkler. Perfect for smaller budgets and a New Year's Eve in, taking you from aperitifs to the midnight toast!